Motherwell 3 Dundee United 0
Wed 30th Mar 7.45pm
Holders Dundee United went out of the Scottish Cup with a convincing 3-0 defeat against Motherwell in their quarter-final replay at Fir Park.
First-half goals from Jamie Murphy and Chris Humphrey had the hosts well in charge before striker Francis Jeffers added a third after the break.
Motherwell will now face St Johnstone in the last four of the competition and challenge for a final place against either Celtic or Aberdeen.
The home side were first to show with Humphrey drilling a shot wide during the opening exchanges before taking the lead on eight minutes as Murphy volleyed in after John Sutton knocked down a long clearance.
And they continued to enjoy the ascendancy with Jeffers forcing Dusan Pernis into action and Shaun Hutchinson heading wide from Stephen Hammill's corner.
Goalscorer Murphy then tried his luck on a couple more occasions and his side deservedly extended their lead on 36 minutes when Humphrey found the top corner after Hammell's cross was helped on by Sutton.
The Tangerines responded by making a switch allowing stand-in centre-back Jon Daly to move back into his more usual attacking role as Barry Douglas was introduced from the bench.
Midfielder Scott Robertson in turn produced a driven attempt that required a routine save from Darren Randolph, while Tom Hateley drifted a free-kick narrowly wide at the opposite end.
David Goodwillie fell in the home area after the break but visiting claims for a penalty went unrewarded before Pernis denied Sutton as the hosts chased a third goal.
That arrived just beyond the hour with former England striker Jeffers finding space on the edge of the area and drilling past Pernis.
His opposite number Randolph tipped over from Scott Robertson late on, but by then the outcome was already decided and the visitors' dream of a second successive final well and truly over.
Motherwell: Randolph, Hammell (Craigan 83), Hutchinson, Gunning, Hateley, Humphrey (Jones 79), Jennings, Lasley, Murphy, Sutton, Jeffers (Forbes 75)
subs (unused): Hollis, Page
Goals: Murphy (8), Humphrey (36), Jeffers (63)
Dundee United: Pernis, Watson, Dillon, Daly, Dixon, Conway (Russell 68), S. Robertson, D. Robertson (Douglas 37), Swanson, Buaben (Shala 71), Goodwillie
subs (unused): Banks, Severin
Ref: C. Murray
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